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Fremantle gets Naked, new UK CEO

Fremantle has bought 100% of Naked Television and appointed its boss, Simon Andreae, as CEO for its UK business, replacing Liam Humphreys.

Simon Andreae

Reporting to group CEO Jennifer Mullin, Andreae will now oversee output from all of Fremantle’s UK labels: Thames, Talkback, Boundless, Euston Films, Hare & Tortoise, Castlefield and Naked.

He will also take a seat on Fremantle’s global operating board. Humphreys, meanwhile, has stepped down from his role as CEO of Fremantle UK.

Fremantle acquired a 25% stake in unscripted firm Naked in 2015 and will now completely own it, with Naked’s chief operating officer Susie Dark and creative director Tom O’Brien assuming the day-to-day running of the business.

Reporting to Andreae will be the heads of all Fremantle UK’s unscripted and scripted labels: Amelia Brown (Thames), Jonno Richards (Talkback), Neil Smith (Boundless), Dark and O’Brien (Naked), Kate Harwood (Euston Films), Hilary Martin (Castlefield) and Jon Rolph (Hare and Tortoise).

Prior to setting up Naked in 2015, Andreae was executive VP of alternative entertainment at Fox in LA, in charge of all unscripted programming, and previously senior VP of development and production at Discovery Channel.

He is also a former commissioning editor at Channel 4 and was a founding partner at Optomen Television.

Naked has been behind series such as Harry Redknapp’s Sandbanks Summer and Manson: The Lost Tapes for ITV; Indian Summer School and the upcoming Ghost for Channel 4; 100% Hotter and Secret Admirer for Channel 5 and 5 Star; My Hotter Half for E4; and 21 Again and the recently renewed The Rap Game UK for BBC3.

Andreae said: “I’m extremely proud of the brand we’ve built at Naked and am looking forward to supporting both them and Fremantle’s other world-class production labels as we shape a truly creative, collaborative and future-facing studio group.”

“Simon knows how to make great content and has a terrific track-record in taking bold risks to create ambitious shows. He’s an inspiring, inclusive leader and brings an enormous amount of energy and creativity,” said Mullin.

Humphreys said he feels now is “the right time for me to return to a closer relationship with content, which is where I have my most ambitious plans.”

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